Taiwan began its energy transition since 2016 by setting priority to phase-out nuclear energy and to increase the share of electricity supply of renewable energy to 20% by 2025. This research critically assessed the policy development of energy transition in Taiwan since 2016 in the perspective of energy justice.
Our research is based mainly on data collected from interviews-based fieldwork in the summer of 2018. Interviewees include government officials, environmental groups, electricity providers, journalists and academics. These interviews also made us to identify the informal interactions and behaviours of various actors in the process of energy transition which that can be highly critical to the policy-making.
The main argument of this paper is that the current energy transition in Taiwan would reduce the environmental injustices for local host communities of nuclear facilities. However, it has also created other injustices such as shortage of electricity, electricity rate increase and extending the operation permit and building coal-fire power plant.
Our findings concluded that the current policy of energy transition in Taiwan has focused less on climate justice. It reflected the political power struggles by politicians, the trade union and environmental nongovernmental organisations (ENGOs). The injustices occurring are resulted from the interest structures which not only set obstacles in achieving a green shift but also preventing a just energy transition.
The overall purpose of this study is to inform how power struggles play a huge role in determining the extent of energy transition that could lead to justice dilemma in Taiwan. Our research contributes to the wider debate on urgent policy issue of the dynamics of energy transition to low-carbon energy and helps members of local communities, government officials and politicians to develop a greater awareness of socio-technical issue and challenges of energy transition in Taiwan.